Academic Catalog


Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology

The Department of Psychology offers a doctoral degree in psychology with specialization in either Industrial/Organizational Psychology or Counseling Psychology.

A degree will be awarded to a student who, besides fulfilling the general requirements, has met the following specific requirements:

  • Fulfill admission requirements of the Graduate School and department requirements as follows:
    • submission of official transcripts
    • completion of master’s degree including 30 graduate credits;
    • attainment of a graduate grade-point average (GPA) of 3.25;
    • completion of Graduate Record Examination General Test;
    • securing of three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with applicant’s academic work;
    • submission of a brief personal statement of professional goals and reasons for choosing the field of Industrial/Organizational or Adult Development and Aging and The University of Akron;
    • submission of a vita outlining educational and professional experiences.

Application materials must be received by January 15.

  • Major field:
    • a minimum of 90 graduate credits including a 30-credit master’s program. A student may be required to complete additional credits beyond the 90 minimum credit requirement;
    • completion of Ph.D. core courses in the student’s specialty area: industrial/organizational. Core courses are specified in the Department of Psychology Graduate Student Manual. The student is required to maintain at least a 3.5 GPA in core courses and overall courses;
    • completion of additional required and elective courses to be planned in conjunction with the student’s faculty advisor and subject to approval by the industrial/organizational committee.
  • Written comprehensive examinations:
    • satisfactory performance on doctoral written and oral comprehensive examinations in the student’s major area of industrial/organizational psychology (refer to the department’s Graduate Student Manual).
  • Dissertation research:
    • completion of 3750:899 Doctoral Dissertation; (minimum 12 credits);
    • satisfactory performance on final examination and defense of dissertation research.
  • Other requirements:
    • refer to the department’s programs or graduate student manual for other requirements or guidelines;
    • complete and fulfill general doctoral degree requirements of the Graduate School.

Counseling Psychology

The University of Akron offers a doctoral program in Counseling Psychology through the Department of Psychology in the Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences which is accredited by the American Psychological Association Currently, students can enter the program with a bachelor's degree or with a master's degree in counseling (or a closely related field). Students are expected to attain a level of broad scientific competence in the core areas of psychology; the biological, social, cognitive-affective, and individual bases of human behavior. Practicum and internship experiences are required of all students and range from skill building in basic psychological assessment and psychotherapy, to actual work with clients, to a year-long, full-time internship in an applied service setting. Pertinent information regarding the emphasis, orientation, and coursework is provided below.

The Department of Psychology's Counseling Psychology program emphasizes the scientist-practitioner model of training. Beyond the basic core areas of psychology, students are expected to establish specific competencies in the theory, research, and practice of the specialty of Counseling Psychology. The program educates culturally competent, ethically reflective scientist-practitioners who are well-prepared generalists able to conduct research, plus provide preventative and clinical interventions. Academic preparation includes theories of psychotherapy, supervision, psychopathology, prevention, diversity issues in counseling psychology, vocational psychology, testing theory and practice, research and statistics, and ethical and professional issues. Research and publication are greatly encouraged. Graduates typically seek out academic teaching, research and training positions, as well as positions in counseling centers and other mental health agencies.

Students must fulfill both Departmental and Graduate School admission requirements. The following application materials must be submitted by the November 15 application deadline:

  • Graduate School application.
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate (if applicable) coursework from each institution attended.
  • Official reports of the GRE General Test.
  • Brief statement of professional goals and reasons for choosing the field of counseling psychology and The University of Akron.
  • Minimum of three letters of recommendation attesting to success in the field and probable academic success at the doctoral level.
  • Resume/Vita.


Electives and sequencing of classes are to be planned along with the student’s advisor.

  • Psychology core courses
  • Counseling psychology core courses
  • Practicum sequence
  • Statistics
  • Thesis credits (for those entering with a bachelor's degree)
  • Dissertation credits

A thesis waiver project completed as specified in the Graduate Student Manual of the Department of Psychology for students entering with a bachelor's degree.

The written and oral comprehensive examinations are prepared, administered, and graded by program faculty.

Dissertation – independent research project conducted under the supervision of dissertation chair and faculty committee.

Internship – a full-time APA accredited pre-doctoral internship over no more than two years.

Students must maintain a 3.50 GPA in their content courses to remain in good standing.